Political Ramifications of Software Procurement

Political Risks & Ramifications of Software Procurement

by Jeffrey Morgan

Business Process Reengineering and software procurement projects can create political firestorms. In a perfect world, everyone would want what is best for the organization, but this world isn’t perfect. Make sure your governing board is committed to the project and is aware of the possible ramifications and risks. Large, disruptive projects require unwavering commitment at the highest levels of the organization.

Official authorization for the project by your governing body, i.e. Commission, Legislature, City Council, Board of Directors, etc. is essential because it establishes buy-in at the highest level. It is also a smart political move. Your project may change the status quo in your organization and not everyone will be thrilled once they come to that realization. Changes in workflow and business processes may mean that people and departments who hold power, authority or status because of their place in the workflow may perceive that they will lose that status. The workload may be redistributed. Some departments and personnel may have more work and others, less. It will become apparent that some people are no longer required in their current positions and possibly entire departments will be reorganized or become obsolete. Those who perceive themselves to be negatively affected by this coming new order are likely to circumvent you and attempt to interfere with or quash the project.

Here is another project risk: Sometimes people quit during large, disruptive projects. I is quite common. Everyone can be replaced and if you have programs for cross-training, it shouldn’t be a problem. If you don’t currently cross-train and thoroughly document processes and procedures, you have another great opportunity to improve your business processes.

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